India’s Youth: Demographic Dividend or Demographic Liability?

In a recent news item I read that India has close to 5 Crores (50 million) youth who are unemployed. Read this article to see this alarming trend: http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshow/37623861.cms  The rate at which we are churning out graduates from our education system, this number will bloat. And this will happen gradually that we won’t notice it, until it happens. Can you imagine what will happen if they simply stay jobless for a few years? Our entire demographic dividend will become a demographic liability. Hence we need to create jobs and at a real fast pace.

Entrepreneurship is really a key tool in this process. Policy makers need to think and apply entrepreneurship in a larger context. Especially from within the educational systems. Most universities in India are still focussed on job creation. With jobs being far and few, this model of education is becoming archaic. We need more discussions on entrepreneurship within campuses. Students need to expose themselves to new trends, new careers, job technologies, etc so that they can explore taking up entrepreneurial initiatives.

It is not necessary that all of them start-up, but they can do things that are different, which can give them interesting jobs, create careers that never existed in the past decade, and may be provide for a few more jobs in their new found space. This approach is essential for society to resolve this ticking time bomb – Youth!

To avoid this time bomb from exploding an turning the much touted dividend and making it a disaster, entrepreneurship should be treated as a socio-economic tool. I am sure this alone will not solve this big challenge, but is going to be a sure tool in heading towards a solution.

Lets all think about this, because while the policy makers come up with a plan, we can do small changes in our own small ways: as parents, as teachers, as friends, as well wishers, as ecosystem players.

A good ecosystem will only enable healthy growth – let’s contribute our part.

Think about it!

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